According to the latest findings, "talking" vehicle technology is likely to lead to safer roads, preventing more than 500,000 collisions per year.
The 300-page report released by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) represents another step towards rolling out the technology within three years. The on-board radio communication devices would be able to transmit and receive messages from other cars concerning a vehicle's brake status, speed, and direction. Installing this vehicle-to-vehicle technology, or V2V, would cost around $345 per car.
So far, 3,000 vehicles containing the technology have been tested in urban areas, rural locations, and in traffic-congested conditions. The report concluded that V2V mechanisms could work "on actual roads with regular drivers."
Although the technology has the potential to save roughly 1,100 lives each year, there has been skepticism surrounding the privacy and security of V2V devices. Some are worried that V2V will track or record a driver's personal information. Automakers are also concerned that since V2V uses data from other vehicles that are not under their control, they will be left vulnerable to legal risk. NHTSA maintains, however, that V2V does not involve the collection or exchange of any private information and has been developed to only transmit safety data.
With the potential to save lives, the prospect of V2V technology does not seem to be going away any time soon.
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"Technology Could Prevent Half a Million Car Crashes a Year." Washington Post. August 19, 2014.